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Let Hezbollah and Israel fight! - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah finally threatened to attack Israel and strike it with thousands of “Fajr” missiles, Although we know that this is an empty threat, we hope that he truly does go through with this and clashes with the Israelis because as the saying goes “let them kill each other.” Israel will be hit, which in turn will hit Nasrallah himself, and the Lebanese will be freed from his militia, which he uses to threaten them during every crisis. As for Benjamin Netanyahu, he will wake from his reverie and realize that no military solution guarantees Israeli security. However what about Hezbollah’s true goal of preoccupying the Arabs and the world away from the project to topple the al-Assad regime? Will this success in postponing the Syrian revolution?

We have passed through two large crises, the Gaza war and the Thursday earthquake in Cairo following President Mursi’s announcement that he is assuming unilateral powers in Egypt. These two events have truly resulted in the world losing focus on the developments on the ground inside Syria. Despite this, the Syrian rebels have been able to advance and gain miles of new territory and surround the regime. If this advance continues at the same pace, we will find President Bashar al-Assad completely trapped in his palace within the next three months. The area surrounding Damascus has been cleared of government troops after 18 months of hit and run attacks, whilst most districts of Aleppo are also now under rebel control. The al-Assad regime has also completely lost its control of the skies after the rebels obtained new stockpiles of rockets which have brought down a number of regime fighter jets and helicopters. Whilst the developments along the Turkish borders are a sign of Turkey’s readiness to get involved in the latest period of the war after it deployed NATO troops and arms along the border, not to mention a missile defense system. This is something that has angered the Iranians in particular, who were betting on the Turkish front remaining quiet and the al-Assad regime maintaining military superiority, particularly aerial superiority.

If the regime is able to hold fast and sustain the fighting beyond the next three months, namely if it is able to last the winter, then the coming Syrian spring will also be a political one as well. With the rapid successes on the ground, we will see a mounting collapse in the last weeks of the regime’s life. These will also be difficult weeks for the Syrian revolution as this will be its first test regarding its control of the ground and preserving the country’s territorial integrity, not to mention establishing a unified military and political body that can provide relief and work in harmony. This is something that will not be easy, but everybody there must face this challenge during the forthcoming moment of truth.

Whilst Iran and other’s attempts to open a new front to preoccupy the Syrians away from their war will not succeed, even if the media do become preoccupied with a new war, such as the one threatened by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah against Israel. Iran and the al-Assad regime are seeking to distract the world with other big events believing that this will intimidate the west and provide cover for the al-Assad regime forces to carry out even worse crimes, however even if Hezbollah rockets hit Eliat – in the southernmost corner of Israel – this will not stop the advance of the Syrian rebels, nor will it help Hezbollah win sympathy from anybody!

We would be very happy to see Hezbollah clash with Israel because we know that it will lose its stockpile of weapons and will became a weakened force in the face of the new Syrian regime. Israel would also reduce Hezbollah’s forces which are used to threaten the Lebanese [political] forces. We would be happy to see Hezbollah do this as this would also mobilize the Palestinian Cause, as the superpowers are forced to revive the peace project after each battle, which raises public clamor and concern regarding the actions of the Israeli government.

Syria itself has become an out of control war, whilst the attempts to distract attention away from this or expand its front or ratify side agreement will all fail and are of no use today, particularly as the rebels are practically at the gates of Damascus and in control of the surrounding area!

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed is the former general manager of Al-Arabiya television. He is also the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, and the leading Arabic weekly magazine Al-Majalla. He is also a senior columnist in the daily newspapers Al-Madina and Al-Bilad. He has a US post-graduate degree in mass communications, and has been a guest on many TV current affairs programs. He is currently based in Dubai.

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